By Venus Laney
How strong is your desire to grow in God? A recent decision in
my own personal life has prompted me to ponder this thought of
"strengthening our faith". A friend reminded me of the
importance of exercising our faith to achieve growth. The
correlations between these topics of physical exercise and
spiritual growth are awesome.
That term resistance just kept coming to me. And so, being the inquisitive person that I am, I went to one of my favorite online sources, Wikipedia, and looked it up. This is great
Resistance training is a form of strength training in which each effort is performed against a specific opposing force generated by resistance (i.e. resistance to being pushed, squeezed, stretched or bent). Properly performed, resistance training can provide significant functional benefits and improvement in overall health and well-being.
The goal of resistance training, according to the American Sports Medicine Institute (ASMI), is to "gradually and progressively overload the musculoskeletal system so it gets stronger."
Is your Spirit man encouraged yet? If not, read the following verses and ponder for a moment
"My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience" James 1:2-3
People who are serious about strength training will pay high dollar for an experienced trainer. This person's job is to examine your physical body to determine specific points of weakness to work on. Their job is also to develop a routine of exercises that will develop these areas to an optimal level without pushing you over the edge or harming you in some way.
Now, think of it this way the Holy Spirit is our personal trainer!!! He knows the areas in which we are in need of strengthening. He also knows exactly how much we can take. He knows our limits better than we do. Many times, we can go much further than we think we can. God understands that and will push us to "feel the burn" many times. Another interesting analogy is that a true workout is only productive after we begin to feel that burn. Everything else is used just to get the muscles warmed up and ready.
Note the part of the explanation where it says "specific opposing force". God knows specifically which areas we are in need of strengthening. Each trial has been approved with that very need in mind. But remember also that He has promised not to put more on us than we can bear (1 Corinthians 10:13).
My favorite new movie is "Facing the Giants". One of the best scenes in it is referred to as "the death crawl scene". For those of you who have not seen the movie yet, the Giants high school football team coach is trying to teach the players that they are capable of more than their thoughts will allow. To illustrate this point, he blindfolds one of the players and gets him to carry another teammate across the entire football field on his back. In the young man's mind, he thought he would only be able to make it a short distance. But, at the coach's urging, he proceeded to far surpass that limit.
We can seriously underestimate our own limitations and more importantly, God's abilities through us. The greatest line in that movie for me is where the coach tells the players to "leave it all on the field". I joke with my son in saying that now, but what an awesome statement. Why not live our lives with that in mind? What are we conserving all of our energy and gifts for anyway? We sure can't take them with us. We have been given a limited time on Earth for a reason. Let's dig in and press on with all we've got! Let's leave it all on the field!!!
Venus Laney is an inspirational writer, songwriter and singer. Whether through songs of praise or written word, her personal reflection and use of God's word is meant to glorify the King and draw the listener/reader closer to Him.